Better Photos by the Christmas Tree

4 steps to better Christmas tree photos:

 It is the time of year to take photos inside by the tree.  Here are 3 quick ways to improve your Christmas tree photos:

1) Tripod or table to stabilize. Normally I am not a tripod user, but in this situation, I definitely try to use something to hold the camera still if I don’t have a lens that I can shoot at a pretty low aperture number.  Even setting it on a table works.  Check out Amazon’s tripods (and you will get them in time for Christmas, oddly enough).  Tripods

2) Use exposure compensation on your camera (usually the +/- button) to underexpose the image.  If you are photographing people, only do it about -1/3,  if you are only doing the lights, play with it until the lights look as beautiful in camera as they do to the naked eye.  The darkness of the tree will cause the image to overexpose everyone around it, along with the beautiful lights on the tree – but that can be fixed by using that exposure compensation button.  PhotoConcentrate has a great e book combo on this, by the way:  Essential Camera Skills

3) If you are using an external flash unit, point the flash head up at the ceiling, if the ceiling is white, is will make the shadows much less sharp, and a whole lot more flattering.  If you are using an on camera flash, use the anti red-eye feature to at least take that out.   You can also hold a translucent piece of white paper in front of that flash to make the light more flattering.  There are a few here on Amazon:  Flash Diffusers

4)  Want that beautiful dreamy look with sparkly, slightly blurry light from the tree? That’s bokeh, and you get it by using the absolutely lowest aperture number available on your lens.  (The shot from this post description was shot at f/1.8). Check out these lenses that give that gorgeous look:  50 1.2, 35 1.4.  An awesome (and WAY less expensive option, is the Canon 50 1.4 – that would be a great 1st prime lens for anyone looking to get great bokeh).

Enjoy these tips – and always let me know if you have any questions!  Have a great holiday :).

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1 Comment

1 Comment on Better Photos by the Christmas Tree

  1. Dick Carver
    December 15, 2014 at 5:33 pm (3 years ago)

    Thanks much Hannah! Merry Christmas. Lots of folks around this place love you. So, travel safe.